Germany, from 2024 electric vertical take-off aircraft (eVTOL) to improve emergency medical assistance

Significant collaboration between ADAC Luftrettung and Volocopter for the development of electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft (eVTOL) for rescue services

A step forward in air rescue and emergency medicine

The collaboration is the result of a partnership that began in 2018, when ADAC Luftrettung, a German air rescue organisation, and Volocopter, a pioneer in urban air mobility, initiated a joint feasibility investigation into the potential application of eVTOLs in air rescue operations. This investigation theoretically demonstrated the effectiveness of eVTOLs in aero-medical contexts, highlighting their potential to improve emergency assistance.

The current plan is to introduce two VoloCity aircraft, manufactured by Volocopter, into ADAC Luftrettung’s emergency medical service (SMU) in Germany in 2024. The use of these vehicles will not replace the use of rescue helicopters, but will serve as a complement, to provide faster assistance from the air. In addition, ADAC Luftrettung has announced plans to purchase another 150 eVTOLs from Volocopter in the future, a sign of their long-term commitment to innovation in the air rescue sector.

Many possibilities offered by this collaboration

Frederic Bruder, CEO of ADAC Luftrettung, emphasised the tactical advantages that eVTOLs can bring to the rescue services, such as operational speed and superior load capacity. Dirk Hoke, CEO of Volocopter, expressed his enthusiasm for the possibility of starting eVTOL operations in Germany by saving lives, emphasising the importance of the emergency rescue use case.

International interest in the application of eVTOLs in rescue services is very strong. In particular, the Assistance Publique – Hôpitaux de Paris showed interest in the ADAC Luftrettung concept, a sign that innovation in air rescue could also be adopted outside Germany.

Roberts_Srl_evtol_volocopterThe protagonists

ADAC Luftrettung is one of the leading helicopter rescue organisations in Europe, with over 50 rescue helicopters in service from 37 bases. Their mission is to ensure that patients receive medical treatment as quickly as possible, either through transport to appropriate hospitals or through the care provided by emergency doctors at the scene of an accident.

Volocopter is an innovative company that aims to develop the world’s first sustainable and expandable urban air mobility company. They currently employ 500 people in their offices in Germany and Singapore, and have successfully completed over 1500 public and private test flights.

The future?

This important and innovative collaboration has the potential to transform air rescue services and improve emergency medical care. Through the use of eVTOLs, air rescue organisations such as ADAC Luftrettung may be able to provide faster and more effective assistance to patients. At the same time, this collaboration offers Volocopter the opportunity to demonstrate the effectiveness and safety of their vehicles in a real-life context. It will be interesting to follow the progress of this collaboration in the coming years and to see how the use of eVTOLs in rescue services will develop and spread internationally.

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